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Grenoble metropolis: transformers burned, homes deprived of electricity
France Bleu, June 13, 2024

Firefighters responded to several fires during the night of Wednesday June 12 to Thursday June 13 in the Grenoble metropolis. In La Tronche but also near the Grand’Place shopping center in Grenoble where several stores are without power. An investigation was actually opened by the Grenoble public prosecutor’s office, and entrusted to the judicial police, because the destruction of these two electrical substations necessarily recalls the wave of fires in Grenoble in recent years.

Moreover, according to the public prosecutor of Grenoble, Eric Vaillant, the almost simultaneous fires of the two transformers, located around ten kilometers from each other, in fact brings to mind sabotage by the libertarian ultra-left. No demands have yet been made, but there are not always any ».

A first fire on an electrical transformer declared itself on avenue du Grand Sablon in La Tronche at 1:20 a.m. 80 homes were deprived of electricity. Enedis has temporarily installed generators since 8 a.m., in particular to power the funeral home site located nearby. These generators will supply the affected households until the end of the work. This work could last several days and cost several tens of thousands of euros.

Two hours later, at 3:17 a.m., at 21 avenue de l’Europe in Grenoble, a fire broke out on a high-voltage transformer. The fire broke out in this old EDF building, the door was broken. “The site experienced break-ins a few days ago”indicates the national police. This high-voltage station supplies 15 other transformers in the sector. Between 3,000 and 4,000 people are affected by these power cuts. Notably the Trésorerie Générale but also the Grand’Place shopping center. The site’s technical managers indicate that the shopping center is equipped with an emergency station and that the power supply was therefore able to continue. The arson trail is preferred.

Grenoble metropolis. Two electrical stations burned:
what we know
Le Dauphiné, June 13, 2024

Between 1 hour and 1 hour 30 minutes, a 20,000 volt electrical transformer, located along avenue du Grand Sablon in La Tronche, literally exploded following a fire probably of deliberate origin. A resident, fortunately unharmed, had to be evacuated as a precaution before firefighters put out the fire. The street was closed to traffic during their intervention and the findings were made by the Grenoble police officers, also on site.

This disaster deprived 80 customers of electricity until 8 a.m. this Thursday morning, Enedis services having quickly put three generators into action while waiting for the replacement of the destroyed transformer. The management of the neighboring Grenoble-Alpes University Hospital indicated that the fire had, however, had no impact on the activity of the hospital establishment.

This event was followed by another similar one a few dozen minutes later. Around 2:30 fact, an electrical transformer station installed in a building formerly belonging to EDF and located on a site currently being deconstructed at 21 avenue de l’Europe, in Grenoble, was in turn set on fire.

This time, there seems to be no doubt about the malicious act: the door to the premises – on which a padlock had been placed on Monday after several break-ins or attempts noted in the previous days – having been broken into by the arsonist(s). All of the installation’s cables and circuit breakers were destroyed, causing the shutdown of 1,768 meters – private or professional – including that of the nearby Grand’Place shopping center.

GreenAlp’s on-call teams did what was necessary to restore power in less than an hour and all affected homes and businesses had power again shortly after 3 hours. The Grenoble public prosecutor, Éric Vaillant, indicated in a press release that an investigation had been opened, entrusted to police officers from the local judicial police service (SLPJ) of Grenoble.

In 2022 and 2023, similar acts of sabotage attributed to the libertarian ultra-left

Investigators will necessarily seek to know if these two fires can be linked to other fires deliberately lit on electrical transformers in recent years in the department. The last two to date were committed during the same night, at the end of May 2023, in the municipalities of Moirans and Izeaux.

Before that, in April 2022, a series of actions of sabotage of electrical installations attributed to small libertarian groups had targeted an RTE substation in Froges, electrical lines under the Brignoud bridge which crosses the Isère between Villard-Bonnot and Crolles , then an Enedis high voltage source station in Meylan.

The large high-tech companies in the Crolles and Inovallée basin, one of the main technology parks in the Grenoble region, then seemed to be the main targets of the saboteurs.



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